It may be a good idea for us to look at UBL, which according to InfoWorld “defines a library of XML-based electronic-business documents for standardizing functions such as purchase orders and invoices.”
It plugs directly into existing traditional business, legal, and records management practices and eliminates the re-keying of data in existing fax- and paper-based supply chains, according to Sun’s Jon Bosak. It also fills the “payload” slot, or document format, in b-to-b commerce frameworks such as the UN/OASIS ebXML initiative and various Web services schemes, said Bosak.
The reason why UBL looks interesting is that it could be useful for SMEs. Bosak stressed “that a UBL infrastructure could level the playing field for smaller companies that need to conduct electronic business with large companies with expensive EDI systems…I think this is how the developing world gets into the party.”